Travel sites see bumper growth in traffic

The recent World Cup may have dampened trade in other retail sectors but visits to travel websites have soared compared to the same period last year, according Hitwise figures.

Visits to travel-related websites increased by 8% year-on-year in the four weeks to 8 July and a rise of 15% on the previous four weeks, Hitwise revealed in a bulletin this week.

The leading players in the online travel sector all performed well during the World Cup, with Expedia, and TripAdvisor seeing yearly increases of 23%, 27% and 20% respectively.

Meanwhile in the search engine arena the most commonly used terms featured “flights to australia” and “cheap flights to australia” for destination searches, while “holidays” and “cheap holidays” scored the highest in the non-brand category.

Hitwise director of research, Heather Hopkins, said: “Despite the hype surrounding the World Cup and high hopes for England in early matches, attention of UK consumers does not appear to have been deflected from planning summer holidays.

“Visits to travel websites have grown more rapidly in the past month than during the same period last year.

Hitwise has forecast the recent surge in bookings will continue until at least the middle of August.

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